Songs That Give You the Creeps

Songs That Give You the Creeps & Opinions on Leonard Cohen

The spookiest time of the year is upon us. To celebrate Halloween, Jim and Greg turn the show over to listeners who share the songs that tingle their spines the most. Plus, they share their thoughts on Bob Dylan's Nobel Prize and review the latest from singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen.

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Music News

Bob Dylan On October 13, American icon Bob Dylan was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature for“having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”This has generated plenty of controversy over whether Dylan's output is worthy, or if a popular songwriter should even be eligible for a literature award. Jim and Greg are ambivalent. They both certainly think that Dylan is a treasure to the world (evidenced by our multipart episode on his career). But they feel his lyrics can‘t be separated from his music – it’s not just what he says, but how he sings it. Dylan, also, seems to not care much, as he still hasn't even responded to any of the Swedish Academy's calls inviting him to the Nobel ceremony.

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Songs That Give You the Creeps

Have you ever heard a song and been totally weirded out by it? The theme of this year's Halloween show is songs that give you the creeps! These are tracks that can be thought of as universally eerie or creepy to you as an individual. Jim and Greg share two songs each that they think fit the bill, and then we'll hear picks from listeners!

reviewYou Want It DarkerYou Want it Darker available on iTunes

Leonard Cohen You Want it Darker

At the age of 82 singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen is the most prolific he has ever been. Unfortunately, this uptick in recording and touring is a necessity after a manager bilked him out of most of his savings. The upside is he continues to produce quality work and that is evident on his 14th studio album, You Want it Darker. Greg says the album finds the aging Cohen wrestling with mortality, god and religion. All with his patented dry-wit. The album is aided with a flattering production that often sounds like the songs could be set in a church while still emphasizing Cohen's baritone voice. That said, Greg says it is not the best album to introduce people to Leonard Cohen, but if you're a fan (as Greg is) this is a buy it. Jim agrees it is a buy it but disagrees about the accessibility of the album saying he's“never been funnier, nor has he been more talented…this is prime Cohen.” You Want it Darker is a double buy it.

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“Nadine”Chuck Berry

Bob Dylan's Nobel Prize for Literature got Greg thinking about other great rock lyricists and the people who influenced them. Chuck Berry is often thought of for his pioneering work with the guitar but he's also a masterful lyricist. Greg points specifically to the 1964 song Nadine and the vivid imagery that Chuck conveys.

Featured Songs

  1. Bob Dylan, Tombstone Blues, Highway 61 Revisited, Columbia, 1965
  2. Bob Dylan, Why Try to Change Me Now, Shadows in the Night, Columbia, 2015
  3. The Robert Cobert Orchestra, Dark Shadows, The Original Music From ABC-TV's Dark Shadows, Philips, 1969
  4. Talking Heads, Memories Can't Wait, Fear of Music, Sire, 1979
  5. Jenny Hval, Female Vampire, Blood Bitch, Sacred Bones, 2016
  6. Jenny Hval, In the Red, Blood Bitch, Sacred Bones, 2016
  7. John Cale, If You Were Still Around, Music for a New Society, ZE, 1982
  8. Pink Floyd, Careful with That Axe, Eugene, Ummagumma, Harvest, 1969
  9. The Shaggs, It's Halloween, Philosophy of the World, Third World, 1969
  10. The Beatles, Eleanor Rigby, Revolver, Capitol, 1966
  11. The Beatles, Eleanor Rigby (Take 14), Anthology 2, Apple, 1996
  12. Red House Painters, Evil, Red House Painters, 4AD, 1993
  13. Harry Nilsson, Ten Little Indians, Pandemonium Shadow Show, RCA Victor, 1967
  14. Skinny Puppy, Love in Vein, Last Rights, Capitol, 1992
  15. Gary Puckett & the Union Gap, Young Girl, Young Girl (single), Columbia, 1968
  16. The Orchestra, March of the Toys, Babes in Toyland, Vintage, 1934
  17. Roy Orbison, In Dreams, In Dreams, Monument, 1963
  18. Elvis Costello and the Attractions, I Want You, Blood & Chocolate, Columbia, 1986
  19. Leonard Cohen, You Want it Darker, You Want it Darker, Columbia, 2016
  20. Leonard Cohen, On the Level, You Want it Darker, Columbia, 2016
  21. Leonard Cohen, Treaty, You Want it Darker, Columbia, 2016
  22. Chuck Berry, Nadine, Nadine (Is It You?), Chess, 1964
  23. Nerves, Hanging on the Telephone, The Nerves, The Nerves, 1976
  24. The Replacements, Bastards of Young, Tim, Sire, 1985
  25. Lee Oskar, Haunted House, Before the Rain, Elektra, 1978
  26. Sonic Youth, Superstar, If I Were A Carpenter, A&M, 1994
  27. Kate Bush, Get Out of My House, The Dreaming, EMI, 1982

Footnotes

soundopinions.org Bob Dylan at 75, Pt. 1 soundopinions.org Bob Dylan at 75, Pt. 2 nobelprize.org Dylan wins Nobel theguardian.com Dylan ghosts Swedish Academy soundopinions.org John Cale on SO soundopinions.org Past Halloween Shows on SO